Wednesday, May 18, 2011

There be stitching going on....


FINALLY, a stitchity up-date from me!!!  My eyes have been improving (I'm SO very grateful and feel SO very blessed!) and so, I've found a bit more time to stitch!  Yippee and yee-haw!  My eyes still get sore and let me know that I'm over-doing it, but the stretches of "good" times are improving.  :)
This is my current piece. Little House Needlework's "Battle Hymn of the Republic".  This was my Dad's favorite song so it means a lot to me to be stitching it in remembrance of him.  Also, our guest bath has a red, white and blue theme, so it will be a perfect fit when it gets finished, framed and hung in there.

Ian's whack-a-doodle non-stop tennis schedule, practices, and season has started up again, so it feels like it's 24-7 tennis at our house.  I have a small Bent Creek design that I take for "on the go" times...but, I usually get so caught up in yacking with the other tennis mom's, that I forget to stitch.  Also, I've discovered that it's pretty tough to keep an eye on the matches and stitch at the same time.  Ah...such is the life that I'm so blessed to live!

I "cherish" that my eyes are getting better!!

Hugs,
*Sharon

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Griswold Family Funeral


Has anyone ever seen the "Vacation" movies with Chevy Chase?  They're sort of an "everything that could go wrong, does go wrong" genre of comedy.  They certainly aren't "high brow", but....sometimes, if you don't laugh, you cry.  This past week, WE became the "Griswold's."
With that being said, let me tell you about our trip...

 My sister-in-law's funeral was in Connecticut, so we flew into Boston, which was the closest major airport.  The trip TO Boston was smooth as could be.  We landed right on time, picked up the rental car, checked into our hotel and GPS'd our way to Connecticut.  The viewing was lovely and it was great to see family members that we haven't seen for a long time.  Just have to say here - doesn't my sweetie son look good in a suit?  :)


After the viewing, back to our hotel.  So far, so good.  (In case I forget to mention this later, Connecticut is LOVELY in the spring).

Okay, cue the organ music (you know that music in really bad old movies that you hear right before something bad happens?  Yup - that's the music that would begin playing on this part of our trip.)

First off, the minister that normally would have officiated was "elderly" and ill (bless his heart) and just couldn't make the funeral.  So, the search was on for a stand-in.  (Note to self - NEVER, EVER let someone eulogize you who has never met you).  The stand-in was a lovely gentleman and I'm sure the service would have been beautiful IF he had gotten my sister-in-law's name right during the funeral.  He kept calling her by another name the entire time!  We kept looking at each other, wondering if we should stop the sevice and let him know that he was messing up the name...but the message was nice, (if not personal, LOL), so the family let it go.
On the drive back to the church from the cemetary, my hubby was struggling a bit.  This passing was such a shock and I think it started to sink in at the burial.  As hubby was releasing his sorrow, a HUGE goose did a MAJOR size "poo-poo" right in front of the driver's side of the windshield.  My hubby immediately said, "Friedie, that wasn't nice - now cut that out!".  We decided that that was his sister's revenge for us not speaking up at the funeral to have her name corrected.  We laughed so hard, we were in tears.  I have to say - that was a really nasty bomb - HUGE, I tell ya - HUGE!  We were sure glad it happened on a rental and not our personal car.  LOL       (just an aside here - the church ladies put on a wonderful post-funeral spread - it was a yummy, sweet gesture and the family is much-appreciative that ya'all treated us so kindly).  After lunch, we GPS'd back to Boston and got ready for a bit of sight-seeing and relaxing.
Minus the in-accuracy at the funeral and the MAJOR "poo-poo", we were still standing.

The next day was spent touring Boston.  Here are some of my favorite pics - -

This is the "one if by land, two if by sea" church
Paul Revere statue

Boston City Skyline
The building that is shown at the beginning of the TV show, "Cheers"

Forget all the history stuff...the only place Ian wanted to go when we were in Boston, was to see Harvard Law School.  His dream is to go to Harvard's law school.  His dad and I are hoping the family budget will hold out through his first four years of college.   :)   Hold on to your dreams, son!  Dream big, work hard and pray much - you can do anything your heart leads you to do!!!! 
Entrace to Harvard
Harvard Law School
Tuckered-out tourist
(I think Ian picked one of the prettiest spots in Boston for a bit of a rest)  :)

Enough with the pictures, already! :)    After a busy day of touristy stuff, we headed back to our hotel for some rest and relaxation.  (There was a minor incident involving our dinner, but compared with what was to come, I'll avoid mentioning the details of our "dinner that wasn't really dinner".  I think food has to be un-frozen with NO ice-crystals before you can call it "food" - just my opinion, though.) Moving right along...the hotel we stayed at had a lovely indoor pool and hot tub...just what these tired tourists needed.  (Don't forget that scary organ music - dun, dun, dun....
So, we're in the pool, having a grand time (and of course, I decided to go for it and get my hair wet and everything), when....the fire alarm goes off!!!!!  Now, if I'm in a fire, I think one of the best places to be is in a swimming pool.  Am I right??  Well, the hotel staff didn't quite see it that way and suggested that we get out of the pool.  So, dripping wet, we head out to safety.  Picture this with me, if you will....first off, we were the only ones in the pool during the fire "incident", so while all the other guests had the good sense to be in "normal" clothes, we were standing around in swim-wear.  Can I just be honest here and tell you that a bathing suit is not exactly my best look?????   Talk about feeling like a fish out of water (pun intended).  Imagine making small talk with well-dressed folks while you're standing in your bathing suit and trying to cover yourself with about 60 towels in a losing attempt at making your hips and thighs look about 4 dress-sizes smaller than you really are. Sigh....
The fire turned out to be on our floor but thank goodness, it was VERY small with just some minor smoke damage.  Shout-out to the folks at the Marriot suites.  The staff was apologetic and very  accomodating. They made a great effort at making up for the inconvenience.

Okay, now that that trauma was over with, it was time to head home.  First off, I get pulled out of line for a security check.  I get that security is what it is and that in today's world, it's a fact of life for an airline passenger - but me?  Really???  I mean, I couldn't look any more like a soccer mom if I tried!  I'm thinking that they were just looking for the crazy lady who was experiencing post-traumatic bathing-suit syndrome...my snarky hubby and my snarky son relished the thought that I was the TSA's poster girl and they walked away, no sweat.  Anyway, I cleared the check-point and went on my merry way.
Time to board - whoops, weather delay.  Time to board again - whoops, air traffic control delay.  Whoops - new gate assignment, another delay.  Then, the BIG whoops - the tail of our plane was struck by lightening, which took off an antena and put a hole in our tail.  This was a BIG delay as there now needed to be a new plane sent to replace the one that had been damaged....this also put us in a position of missing a connecting flight.  I'm sure grateful that this happened when we were readying for take-off and not in the air!!  Again, we were blessed with a great staff - the airline folks worked really hard at making things as easy as possible for us.  (Of course, I think it also helped that we weren't standing at the counter SCREAMING at the poor gate agents.  I couldn't believe how some people were treating the agents.  It wasn't their fault that the plane got a "boo-boo".  So many times, the announcement was made that if people would just sit down, they would be called to the counter and all arrangements would be made once they (the employees) had all the information.  (Did I mention that the computers all decided to slow WAY down at this time...Oh, I didn't? Well, they did...more organ music!!!)  I understand travel frustrations, (believe me, I REALLY understand travel frustrations) but honestly, is SCREAMING any way to help the situation?  Okay, off my soap-box...
We finally got on our way and landed at our connecting point with only ten minutes to spare.  We ran (on my two bad knees, mind you!) to the gate listed on the monitors, only to find that the gate number had changed!  Argh!  Of course, the new gate was at the other end of the terminal, so off we went running again.  Luckily, we made that flight and FINALLY started the last leg of our journey.
Once we landed in Orlando, we collected our baggage and went to get our car.  (We had parked off-site of the airport, that made parking much cheaper!)  Mind you, because of delays, we didn't land until about 1:00 AM.  So, we called for the shuttle and waited.  And waited. AND waited, AND WAITED.  Still no shuttle.  Umm...hello?????  We called the shuttle again (seems that our message that we were waiting at the airport never made it from the shuttle desk to the shuttle driver.  Whoops).  Can I just tell you how good our own bed felt that night?

I'm still relishing our own bed and our own food and...well, there truly is no place like home!!!!
So, to review...wrong name at funeral, a MAJOR birdie "bomb", frozen food, a bathing suit and fire, major flight delays, including a hole being blown out in the tail and a shuttle "incident", I have to say, I've had better trips.  BUT, we endured it all as a family and sink or swim, we were together.  Just call us the Griswold's.....

I "cherish" funny memories.

*Sharon